Upgrade 2009 MBP VS new rMB/MBa for light photo editing on the go

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by jayla008, Jul 21, 2016.

  1. jayla008, Jul 21, 2016
    Last edited: Jul 22, 2016

    jayla008 macrumors newbie

    Jul 19, 2016
    Hi all,

    I'm an Aussie photographer in need of a laptop for light photo editing and basic processing.

    My current situation: sluggish MacBook Pro 15” Mid 2009 (MacBookPro5,3) with the following specs:
    • OSX El Capitan 10.11,
    • 2.66 GHz Intel Core 2 Duo,
    • 4 GB RAM,
    • 320 GB HDD (with 150 GB free space),
    • NVIDIA GeForce 9600M GT 256 MB, and
    • A dead battery, so it always plugged in.
    Needless to say it is super slow so I’m looking for advice! Should I upgrade or buy new?

    Option 1: Performance upgrade

    I’ve been advised (previous threads here and here) to put in a SSD and 8GB RAM for a performance upgrade + battery replacement ($495AUD). Will the upgraded MBP be good enough for what I need?

    Option 2: New purchase

    a) 12" Retina MacBook ($1,999 AUD) with processor 1.1 GHz and 515 Graphics
    b) 13" MacBook Air ($1,849 AUD) 1.6 GHz dual-core i5 & 6000 Graphics (no recent updates).

    Will either be good enough to do what I need? Any thoughts much appreciated!

    Thanks :)
  2. Jychow macrumors newbie

    Oct 29, 2011
    If there is no budget constraint, go for a new MacBook. It is always a better choice.

    I've a 15 MacBook Pro mid 2009. Recently replaced a new battery, and a SSD. It is working very well with El Capitan. If the motherboard doesn't fail, I think it should last me another 2-3 years.
  3. jayla008 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jul 19, 2016
    I bit the bullet and bought the rMB - absolutely loving the portability of it!

    Can't wait to put it through it's paces this week :)

    I'm also considering upgrading my MBP as a backup machine - but not sure if I can justify the $500 spend now that I've got the rMB.
  4. MaxMike macrumors 6502

    Dec 6, 2009
    For probably under $200 USD you could do the RAM upgrade to 8GB and put in an SSD. My 2011 MBP is still running fine for my use since those upgrades years ago, I'm just sick of lugging around a 15-inch laptop. Great for college, but now it's getting tiring.

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